Wednesday, August 15, 2012

In which small son & friend contemplate Eternity.

Today I took small son and his friend to the mountain bike skills park. On the way back we had to take a diversion because of a fallen tree on the road, and we passed a cemetery. "My auntie's buried in there," said small son's friend. This led into a discussion about what we wanted done with our remains after we have shuffled off this mortal coil. 
I said I quite fancied this (below), a Zoroastrian Tower of Silence. I visited it whilst touring Iran in 1992. The bodies used to be laid out on the top in a walled area and birds came down and pecked them up. According to the Iranian guide who showed us round this one, if the birds pecked out your right eye first it meant you were going to heaven, and if they pecked the left one out first it was hell. He assured us that the guardians of the tower always told grieving relatives that the right eye had been pecked out first, regardless of which it had been, to spare their feelings.
"But what if they didn't LIKE their dead relative?" objected small son's friend. "They might not WANT him to go to heaven."
"Then I expect the relatives asked a leading question," I said. "Such as, 'they DID peck his left eye out first DIDN'T THEY???' "

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